Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5
Deacon Miller never had it all—he never really believed he could. Growing up in a broken home with an alcoholic mother and a revolving door of truly pathetic father figures taught him to keep his expectations low. Now at twenty-seven, on the night before Christmas Eve, his life is turned upside down yet again; his boyfriend has dumped him, he just fled the holiday family reunion from hell, and now to top it all off, a blizzard has left him stranded in an airport hotel.
Steve Steele has spent the better part of his forty-four years living a lie, ignoring his attraction to other men in an attempt to fit into the mold of the man he thought he should be, instead of living life as the man he knew himself to be. Recently divorced after coming home from work one day and coming out to his wife, Steve has floundered over the past year, desperately attempting to wade through the guilt and find the courage to start again.
That’s when a chance meeting in a hotel bar brings two lonely men together… and what should’ve been a one night stand turns into something much more than either one ever expected.
I read this story when it was first released in 2013 and loved it. Ethan Day’s tale of a complicated mess of a romance between Steve Steele and Deacon Miller grabbed at my heart because of all they went through to be together and become a family. Ethan Day has always been one of those writers with the ability to make me empathize with his characters and their difficult situations. Day can make you laugh and then turn around and send you running to the tissue box for the next round of Kleenex as his characters problems become seemingly insurmountable. Nothing put you on a rollercoaster ride of emotions better than Northern Star so I couldn’t wait to see how it would translate to audio.
Well, it was wonderful. Jason Frazier with a cast of characters that his voice can summon takes a story I loved and made it fresh for me. I felt as though I was hearing/coming at it for the first time all over again. Again I’m at the hotel bar where Deacon and Steve are meeting and having really hot sex afterwards. I’m following them through all the tumultuous days that follow at the hospital where Deacon’s mom was taken after drunk driving. Steve’s fight to adjust to his new status, Deacon and his sister’s plight, all the incredibly complex relationship dynamics and family drama that unfolds…Jason Frazier’s voice holds our attention to the story and the characters lives happening before us. And there is so much here. Child abandonment issues, alcoholism in parents, the effects of being closeted and the fear of being outed for most of a person’s adult life, poor self esteem, on and on. Ethan Day addresses realistically many important issues here, ones that need to be examined before Steve and Deacon can have a shot at a permanent relationship themselves.
The pain the characters are feeling, the anger and the many other emotions all come across in the voices of Jason Frazier. He really does justice to Ethan Day’s story and characters and he made this story a wonderful audiobook experience! I loved it in 2013 and I adore it again in audiobook! I highly recommend this one for all you lovers of contemporary romance.
Cover by Wilde City Press art director. Works perfectly for the characters and storyline.
Originally released in 2013 from Wilde City Press in eBook format
Audible Audio Edition
Listening Length: 8 hours and 41 minutes
Program Type: Audiobook
Publisher: Ethan Day
Audible.com Release Date: July 4, 2017
Whispersync for Voice: Ready